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Durham University

Institute of Advanced Study

IAS Staff

Publication details for Professor Veronica Strang

Strang, V. (2013). Conceptual Relations: water, ideologies, and theoretical subversions. In Thinking With Water. Chen, C., Macleod, J. & Neimanis, A. Montreal: McGill-Queens University Press. 185-211.

Author(s) from Durham


One of the most striking effects of modernity has been the emergence in Western thought of an extraordinary hubris: a conceptual bifurcation between culture and nature, and the idea that “civilization” has separated humankind from inclusion in and interdependence with ecological processes. This conceptual relation is often gendered, positioning culture with (active) masculinity and nature with (passive) femininity. At times it has also been heavily racialized, aligning notions of culture with primarily Western, more cosmopolitan ways of life, and conflating notions of (unspoiled/unformed) nature and (innocent/primitive) indigeneity.¹

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